Organizations can benefit by focusing their data initiatives on clearly identified high-impact business problems or use cases. By starting where there is a critical business need, executives can demonstrate value quickly through “quick wins” that help a company realize value, build credibility for their investments in data, and use this credibility to identify additional high-impact use cases to build business momentum. We see firms that invest in data capabilities and technology without a clearly defined business demand failing time and time again.

If a corporate initiative is failing, try showing that it’s worth doing. People don’t want to change, esp. if there’s no proof that there’s a reason and that things get better. Too much business transformation stuff is drive by the promise that things will get better, by the speculation. Most of the time they don’t get better – there are many more failed startups than successful ones, you know. The current system, by nature of it being what people do, “works.” It might be in the decline, but it’s well known and has worked well to this point: it’s safe. You can force people to consider new things out of a sense or urgency, by showing them that their life will be better in the new system (which is largely about exposing how bad the current system is), and demonstrating that the new system is better.

Also in the context of “everything changes” and “data is the new oil” type stuff, you should revisit the assumption that it’s all a big deal. After 5, 10 years of the culture resisting change, maybe the culture is right: your tech-led imperative to change isn’t such a big deal. It’ll just make you 10% better, not 300%. The change required to get there is equally less dramatic, &, hence, your “culture” seems a barrier.

🔗 Why Is It So Hard to Become a Data-Driven Company?